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  #1  
Old 01-07-21, 10:10 AM
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Default Are these WW2 para wings?

Can someone tell me whether this style of para wing was worn in WW2 or were they post-war? Thanking you.
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  #2  
Old 01-07-21, 04:56 PM
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Hi Akiko,

I believe your wing is very similar to the first type of post war Rhodesian parachute wings.

See attached photo and similar set from my collection.

Paul
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  #3  
Old 02-07-21, 12:04 AM
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Ok but I wonder whether they worn in WW2?
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  #4  
Old 02-07-21, 12:17 AM
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Paul said post war Rhodesian parachute wings.
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Old 02-07-21, 09:56 PM
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Here is a set of four WW2 era British paratrooper wings that has provenance having been part of an OSS grouping in a private collection. If you look at the wing in the upper left it is very similar to the one Akiko is asking about. I have one in my collection and I've added some close up pictures of my piece and it seems to be very similar to the one Akiko presented except it is embroidered upon a black material instead of a tan colored material. Is it possible that the wing presented by Akiko was produced during the war? As Rhodesia was a British Commonwealth could they have simply adopted this particular design out of the UK in the late 1950s to early 1960s which continued to be produced after the war?

post-185107-0-27468600-1544571614_thumb.jpg

post-185107-0-60524500-1544571627_thumb.jpg

post-185261-0-68842400-1544486706_thumb.jpg

post-185261-0-47003500-1544486759_thumb.jpg
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Old 03-07-21, 03:05 PM
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My first impressions when I obtained the wing I posted was that it was WW2 but then a very experienced Rhodesian collector shared the photo of it being worn and stated that it was the first version of the parachute wing issued by post war Rhodesian forces.

I believe it's perfectly feasible that the design was copied from a war-time wing perhaps even copied from the one highlighted on a black background.

I'll search my photo archives and see if I can find a wartime photo of a similar wing being worn.

Paul
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  #7  
Old 03-07-21, 07:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3battalion View Post
My first impressions when I obtained the wing I posted was that it was WW2 but then a very experienced Rhodesian collector shared the photo of it being worn and stated that it was the first version of the parachute wing issued by post war Rhodesian forces.

I believe it's perfectly feasible that the design was copied from a war-time wing perhaps even copied from the one highlighted on a black background.

I'll search my photo archives and see if I can find a wartime photo of a similar wing being worn.

Paul
You may be on the right track when you mentioned copied as another British Commonwealth country by the name of Ghana adopted a paratrooper wing that is also similar in design to the one presented by Akiko except the wings are black in color and the background color ranging from light to dark tan (see attached photos).

Ghana Military Forces Insignia.jpg

DSCF1376.jpg

DSCF1377.jpg
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Old 04-07-21, 08:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3battalion View Post
My first impressions when I obtained the wing I posted was that it was WW2 but then a very experienced Rhodesian collector shared the photo of it being worn and stated that it was the first version of the parachute wing issued by post war Rhodesian forces.

I believe it's perfectly feasible that the design was copied from a war-time wing perhaps even copied from the one highlighted on a black background.

I'll search my photo archives and see if I can find a wartime photo of a similar wing being worn.

Paul
The Rhodesian collector was possibly Peter Garratt. His username was rhodesianmilitaria and he used to be on this forum. I'm a friend and help him every now and then with the book that he is writing.
The b&w photo that shows the wing in question being worn was supplied to him years ago by his friend, Craig Fourie.
Peter believes the wing was made post WW2 even though he doesn't have any evidence of that.
His info from Craig was that it was worn by Rhodesians and Brits (who had moved to Rhodesia) who had been para trained during the war. Rhodesia didn't have a PTS at that time so logically they never had any para wings of their own so they adopted this wing.
Some list this para wing as being Rhodesian but it's not. It was the first army para wing worn in Rhodesia but it was neither designed nor made there.
The Ghana wing is interesting and there is a major difference between the two. He thinks it's possible they were made in the UK by the same company but he has no evidence.
Any information is helpful and I'm sure he'll give anyone due credit in his book.
Thanks for all of the information.
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Old 04-07-21, 01:04 PM
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Yes the Rhodesian collector was Peter and he was kind enough to share the photo with me.

Iím still on the fence on this wing being war-time or post war given the only evidence to date of this wing being worn is the photo provided by Craig via Peter to me on a post-war Rhodesian officerís uniform.
I would urge caution about the assumption that the absence of a PTS meant that the Force couldnít have a wing of their own.

It would be good to see the evidence that this para wing was not designed nor made there? Itís certainly a distinctive design and the later Army designs closely followed the original wing.

A very interesting thread this is developing into and this is one of my favourite wings so keen to learn as much about it as possible.

Thanks
Paul
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Old 05-07-21, 01:18 AM
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Quite interesting wings with some common features with early private purchase WW2 British badges (see https://www.britishbadgeforum.com/fo...45&postcount=9)

Feather detached and special rigging lines design are very close, the canopy is quite different though compared to the cloud pattern.

Unfortunately, many different patterns of private purchase para wings were made in UK during and after the war and it is impossible to date and classify them properly.
This design could also have been a special order made in UK for the Rhodesian forces.

An interesting and beautiful design nevertheless. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 05-07-21, 01:42 AM
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Paul, I have spoken to Peter and he sent me this photo. The person in the photo is the late Jock Hutton who passed away at age 96. He served in the 13th Lancashire Parachute Battalion during WW2, jumped on D-Day and later went on to become RSM of the Rhodesian SAS.
This photo was taken in the early 1960s in Rhodesia and shows him wearing the type of para wing that we are discussing.
In 1961 PTS was built but the PJI brevets were a British issue for a number of years. Pete's logic is if the Rhodesians were making para wings at this time why weren't the SAS and the PJI's wearing them instead of English made ones?
Army-wing_sphoto.jpg
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Old 05-07-21, 01:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcrown View Post
Quite interesting wings with some common features with early private purchase WW2 British badges (see https://www.britishbadgeforum.com/fo...45&postcount=9)

Feather detached and special rigging lines design are very close, the canopy is quite different though compared to the cloud pattern.

Unfortunately, many different patterns of private purchase para wings were made in UK during and after the war and it is impossible to date and classify them properly.
This design could also have been a special order made in UK for the Rhodesian forces.

An interesting and beautiful design nevertheless. Thanks for sharing.
Yes it is a good point that they could have been made in the UK just for Rhodesian forces. As you have mentioned they could also have been private purchase para wings that the Southern Rhodesian Government bought. Both are good points and haven't been dismissed by him as far as I know but I will mention it.
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Old 05-07-21, 07:36 AM
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That's a great photo and Peter makes a good point about the SAS and PJI brevets.

The thing that still intrigues me is the time frame for this wing. The photos we have of this wing being worn is from the 60's, 15 to 20 years after the war. I know some late war British wings were worn into the late 50's and I'm trying to get my head around two different soldiers wearing the same wing in the 60's? Perhaps Rhodesia acquired a batch of old war stocks or they ordered the wings to be produced?

Paul
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